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Ropersmith Erosion Control

2024 is here! That means it’s time to break out the trail tools and embark on another year of service on public lands!

Troop 111 was up early with the cold and headed high into Harmon Canyon Preserve this morning to make repairs to the Ropersmith Trail.

Supervised by two of the Ventura Land Trust’s trail foremen, the Scouts cleared debris, repaired erosion controls, and hauled a ton of earth and stone to repair the upper sections of the trail.

Things are starting to look nice and “flowy” again on this fantastic shared hiker/MTBer route. Great work, gents!

Thrash-A-Thon

What is Thrash-a-Thon?

The boys are trying to raise money for the Troops extensive activities for the year round, including many service projects throughout the year, summer camp in the high Sierras, as well as a 7 day canoe paddle through the Atchafalaya swamps in Louisiana.

Rather than selling cookies or popcorn or something that does not relate to our troop's mission, we are asking for sponsorships to help us to keep improving our public lands and help the boys experience more of what the outdoors have to offer.

Scout have pledge at least 4 hours of service during the month of March (in addition to many other service projects throughout the year). One of our main objectives at this time is removing an invasive plant called Tamarisk that is very difficult to removed, and draws a lot of precious water out of the ecosystem starving other local natives for resources. Removing a tamarisk bush from Harmon Canyon waterways takes on average 4 scouts at least one hour to remove its rootball, gather all leaves/droppings so it does not germinate further. These are not small tasks and there are hundreds left in this canyon. Other service includes clearing trail of mustard grass, sawyering downed trees to clear trails, cutting rainbars to help prevent erosion, and any other activities that the Ventura Land Trust or other land management agencies ask of us.

Our suggested sponsorships are as follows, but please give as you are able. All sponsorships are appreciated! 10 - Clear 25 feet of Mustard Grass from the Trail

$25 - Sawyer a fallen tree from the trail

$50 - Cut a Rain bar

$100 - Remove a Tamarisk

For every dollar collected: 65% will go to the Scout directly, 30% will go to the Troop general funds, 5% will go to the Scout Council.

WHY

We want to both raise money for the Troop general fund and to give an opportunity for scouts to be able to pay their own way. Scouting should not be exclusionary based on costs. Scouting gear and camps get expensive, and we want to help offset that cost. Also, by getting our name and image out into the community, we want to show what an amazing program and troop this is, and how your Scout is helping the community.

When:

January 9 – February 1 Solicit donations.

March (various dates TBD) – Perform service work.

Where:

Scouts will be seeking sponsorships at various store fronts in Ventura, and will perform their pledged service hours during the month of March.

Awesome! How do I donate?

Either come find us at the store fronts, or click here - http://troop-111-ventura.square.site/

Adventures at Philmont

There is a lot to say about a 10 day on the trail and four days on a train. But one thing anyone who experiences it can tell you is that it’s life changing. At philmont this summer Troop 111 was given the unlikely chance of splitting into two crews and having those crews have the very same trek, extremely lucky indeed. Some highlights of this trip were the top of the Tooth of Time, a whole zero day of relaxing, and hanging out in the observation train car. 

 

As one could expect from a trip like this there was a fair bit of hurting on the many days of hiking. But it never went to anyone’s head. For the whole time no one ever tapped out and said they couldn’t do it. Quite the contrary. In the nature of being cheerful everyone always kept a smile on their face and always helped lift everyone else up to have a smile as well. 

 

When we were loaded on the bus to take us back to the train station we all looked over our heads to see Arrowhead Rock, which legend has it if you look back and see it you will return one day. And that we already know we will. 

 

Green bar Pow Wow at San Simeon

From August 31 to September 2, Troop 111 went on a trip to San Simeon state park. Many boys took the opportunity to climb trees, get sign offs done, or both. There was also a 5 mile hike for the boys who needed it for ranks or merit badges. Along with this, the boys in leadership roles of the troop met to hammer out possibly the best, if not most insane, annual schedule our troop has ever had. After the meeting the hikers and leaders all met down at the beach. This was both a fun and productive trip overall.

Summer Camp at Whitsett

On Sunday, June 30, 2019, Troop 111 took a drive to Camp Whitsett, staying for the whole week. The camp offers a wide variety of programs for the scouts, including many different merit badges, such as swimming, archery, and environmental science. One of the programs was the overnight on Wednesday, Scouts hiked to a small field where there were activities such as tug of war, jenga, and foam swords. That night we slept outside under the stars. Another great part of this camp was the waterfront. It had a swimming area, canoes, rowboats, and kayaks. Some scouts also decided to go fishing. On the last day, the Camp Wide Games were held, which had troops competing in activities such as kayaking, swimming, running, and archery, in which Troop 111 came in third place. Overall, it is a great camp, almost as nice as Camp 3 Falls!